The other day, my vegan friend Bree told a story. She used to date a guy whose mother would always introduce her by saying: “This is Bree. She’s VEY-GON.”
“It was like I was from the planet Vega, in the faraway galaxy of kohlrabi,'' she says. She may as well have been—in the early days of her lifestyle change she felt “very misunderstood.”
Chances are you’ve got a vegan friend, or a few. Chances are that at some point in their lives they’ve been asked: “You won’t eat brisket, but will you have an egg?” Well, you don’t want to be any version of that person.
And if your vegan friends are anything like mine, sometimes, they need (vegan) gifts. I like to think of each occasion as an opportunity to make good on all the people who don’t totally get their life choices. But I’ll also be the first to admit it’s not always easy—my own struggle became apparent when I realized most wines aren't 100 percent vegan.
The good news is that we decided to put in the hard work for you, and sift through a universe of possibilities to get to the good stuff. So, here are 22 gifts—good looking, funny, nurturing, and thoughtful—that are perfect for vegans.
1. Hu Chocolate Bars, $25 for 4
Because a clean-eating, vegan chocolate bar sounds like a misnomer—but it doesn't have to be.
2. Garden Jar Herb Growing Kit, $20
A kitchen garden for your kitchen counter, because...cozy apartments.
3. Subscription to Peddler Journal, $20
4. Reusable Bamboo Dinnerware, $48
Help them cut down on plastic, while also eating with non-toxic dinnerware that’s stylish, lightweight, and durable.
5. The ultimate Spiralizer, $29.97
You don't have to be vegan to love a great spiralizer, but for many a raw-food vegan, they're especially crucial.
6. Vegan Wine, $60 for 3 bottles
Turns out, it’s hard to know when a wine is vegan or not, but Wonderful Wines is a cinch—plus, their starter pack includes a red, white, and orange to whet their appetite.
7. Soy Wax Candle, $14.95
All-vegan, parabens and cruelty-free candles with a really long burn time—aka the best company for a relaxed night in.
8. The Food52 Vegan Cookbook, $24
Think sweet pea hummus, tempeh kebabs, and chai-spiced bread pudding. We think you might end up getting a copy for yourself.
9. Make a Donation
To charities committed to making life better for people, the planet, and animals. There are several to choose from, from the Humane Society and Animal Legal Defense Fund, to localized organizations. Chilis on Wheels, for instance, delivers free plant-based meals to communities in need.
10. Canvas Market Tote, $50
Perfect for farmers market runs, this hardy but good looking tote has a pocket for everything.
11. Van Leewan Ice Cream, $7.99
What’s better than one all-vegan ice-cream? The caramelized banana nut, made with housemade raw cashew milk, is this non-vegan’s favorite.
12. Countertop Sprouter, $25
Small enough to hold in one hand, cute enough to look like a terrarium, and efficient enough to produce a heck-ton of sprouts.
13. Vitamix Blender, $289.95
This one is quite fairly called the engagement ring of vegan gifts but then, some friends are just worth it.
14. Vegan Power Food Pins, $4
Because enamel pins will always be cool, and so will tacos. This one's for vegans who proudly wear their hearts (and tummies) on their shirt/apron/hat.
Vegan leather brand Matt&Nat has the perfect cruelty-free but fashion-forward gift for your favorite vegan—plus, this little coin purse clips onto keys to always keep it handy.
16. Sweet Potato Soul, $15.29
Full of vegan twists on Southern soul food; author (and blogger) Jenné Claiborne had us at Bootylicious Gumbo.
17. Dr. Hempster Bath Bombs, $29.99
Nothing says self-care like a long hot soak. The fact that these bath bombs are not tested on animals makes for even deeper relaxation.
18. Beauty Subscription Box, $34.95
For vegan, non-toxic and cruelty-free cosmetics delivered straight to their door throughout the year.
19. ‘Love All Animals’ Beach Towel, $25.49
Why sun bathe on a floral towel when you can do so on a repeated cow motif? A purchase of one of these soft and fluffy towels contributes to Mercy for Animal's mission to eradicate the raising of animals for food—something your vegan friend is likely passionate about.
20. Cultures For Health Vegan Yogurt Starter, $10.99
A vegan yogurt starter kit is the gift that will keep on giving.
21. Vegan Snack Box, $103
Sweet, salty, savory, chewy, crunchy—and all plant-based.
22. Zero Waste Kit, $45
This all-inclusive kitis perfect for anyone on your list who's looking to reduce their footprint, not just vegans, with reusable utensils, lunch boxes, tote bags, straws, and more.
23. EcoTools Makeup Brushes, $9.98
For the vegan in your life who loves to get made up: sworn-by makeup brushes that are totally cruelty-free.
24. Veja Vegan Leather Sneakers, $110
Sneakers that are totally on-trend, and don't use animal products? Yes, they'll love them. While some Veja styles do incorporate leather, they have a large selection of shoes made from non-animal materials.
24. Tinted Lip Balms, $5
Since many lip balms have beeswax in them, it's usually pertinent to check the ingredients of a beauty product before purchasing one for a vegan friend. These are 100% vegan, as well as moisturizing and lightly tinted.
25. Houseplant Subscription, $15
We're willing to bet that the vegan in your life is also a plant parent, and in this case, a monthly houseplant subscription is the perfect thing. Each one comes sustainably packaged, includes care instructions, and all species are pet-friendly.
26. Milk Makeup Set, $27
Another gift for the makeup- and skincare-obsessed vegan in your life: a set of cult faves from the ever-popular brand, Milk. Think: liquid eyeliner, brightening serum, and high-volume mascara.
27. Reusable Cotton Produce Bags, $29 for 8
What's a veggie haul without reusable bags? These come in two versatile weaves and three sizes, and are machine washable—making their reuse all the easier.
27. Tofu Press, $24.99
This might be the most satisfying way to eliminate excess water from a block of tofu, since the transparent design lets you see the moisture being squeezed from it. Plus, now your friend's tofu has all the more room to soak up a marinade.
28. How to Be a Vegan and Keep Your Friends, $16.39
Transitioning into a plant-based diet might be the easier part of veganism compared to the lengthy explainers your friend often has to give, and the rolled eyes they might receive. Giving this book is a lighthearted reminder that you're here for the long run.
30. Have a Meaningful Conversation
Be more willing to have the kinds of empathic conversations your vegan friend is dying to have outside of her immediate vegan circle. Remember, affirming conversations go a long way in bridging boundaries.
The Food52 Vegan Cookbook is here! With this book from Gena Hamshaw, anyone can learn how to eat more plants (and along the way, how to cook with and love cashew cheese, tofu, and nutritional yeast).Order now